A recent graduate of the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, bass David Leigh has drawn acclaim throughout the United States and abroad for his visceral voice and intelligent singing.
In the 2019-2020 season, Mr. Leigh makes a house and role debut with Seattle Opera as Prince Gremin in Eugene Onegin, debuts with Michigan Opera Theatre as the Commendatore in Don Giovanni, makes his house and role debut as Timur in Turandot with Austin Opera, and returns to Dallas Opera as Il Frate while covering King Filippo in Verdi’s Don Carlo, under the baton of Music Director Emmanuel Villaume. The summer of 2020 marks an important role debut as King Marke in Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde in a return to Santa Fe Opera.
The 2018-19 season included a number of prestigious debuts, including his San Francisco Opera debut as Zuniga in Carmen while covering the role of Vodnik in Rusalka, his Santa Fe Opera debut as King Hjarne in Poul Ruder’s The Thirteenth Child, and his Canadian Opera Company debut in the leading role of Turbo in the world-premiere of Rufus Wainwright’s Hadrian, opposite Karita Mattila, Thomas Hampson and Ben Heppner. He returned to the Bolshoi Theatre as Colline in La bohème and made a role debut as Sparafucile in Rigoletto with Kentucky Opera, and joined Dallas Opera in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut.
Recent career highlights include a company and role debut with the Bolshoi Theatre as Colline in a new production of La bohéme, and company debuts with Festival d’Aix-en-Provence and Opéra National de Lorraine, Les Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg as the Commendatore in Don Giovanni. At the Metropolitan Opera, he performed the Surintendant des Plaisirs in Laurent Pelley’s production of Massenet’s Cendrillon under the baton of Bertrand de Billy, and was presented in a joint recital at the Park Avenue Armory with mezzo-soprano Emily D’Angelo. Other engagements include the Commendatore with Florentine Opera and the Festival d’Opéra Baroque de Beaune, Fafner in Wagner’s Siegfried with Cincinnati’s Queen City Opera, and the Verdi Requiem with the Choral Society of Northeast Pennsylvania. He has participated in the Ravinia Steans Music Institute, as well as the recent New York City Opera Gala in honor of Julius Rudel with Frederica von Stade, Christine Goerke, and Plácido Domingo.
From a family of artists, David’s father was a Tony Award-winning composer, his mother is a painter, and his sister is a multiple award-winning playwright. He studied music composition at Yale University and holds master’s degrees in Voice and Opera (respectively) from Mannes College and Yale School of Music, from which he received the Harriet Gibbs Fox Prize. He has received awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, the McCammon Competition at Fort Worth Opera, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and a 2017 top prize from the Wagner Society of New York.
“Remember the name David Leigh. The young bass sang the Commendatore with a big, arresting, constantly focused sound, delivering both vocals and the theatrical elements of his role with a calm, magnetic command.”
“A formidable presence as the Commendatore…”
“David Leigh’s Commendatore, with his stunningly overwhelming bass notes…”